Sri Lanka outclassed Netherlands in the final to win the 23’ CWC Qualifiers

Sri Lanka produced one of their finest performances in the CWC Qualifiers 2023 CWC Qualifiers 2023 ended on a remarkable note with Sri Lanka winning the final agai

CWC Qualifiers 2023 ended on a remarkable note with Sri Lanka winning the final against Netherlands by 128 runs at Harare Sports Club. After some magnificent performances throughout the tournament, the Lankans produced one of their finest shows in the final to steal a phenomenal victory over the Dutch team.

The Netherlands, after winning the toss, opted to bowl first which proved to be the right call as they bowled well throughout. They continued their good bowling performance in the final after all their bowlers bowled well especially van Beek and Ryan Klein who didn’t allow Sri Lanka to put a big total on the board. 

The openers Pathum Nissanka and Sadeera Samarawickrama were sent back early by Vikramjit Singh. They scored 23 and 19 with the help of some good shots but couldn’t convert their innings into a big one.

After that, the Asian team were going well with the bat with Kusal Mendis and Sahan Arachchige adding 72 runs for the third wicket before Mendis was trapped in front of the wicket by Saqib Zulfiqar. Mendis scored a crucial 43 before going back to the pavilion, however, Arachchige played a good knock of 57 runs before getting out. He also added 64 runs alongside Charith Asalanka for the fourth wicket.

It looked like Sri Lanka would be able to achieve the score of 300 with the way they were playing, however, the pace attack of the Netherlands was too good for the Lankans. The likes of Dhananjaya de Silva and Dasun Shanaka failed to deliver with the bat as the team could only score 233 runs in the end.

With the kind of form the Netherlands were in, it was not a tough target to chase down but some exceptional stuff from Sri Lanka kept their dreams at rest. The team from Europe had a poor start with the bat, probably their worst when it comes to the CWC Qualifiers 2023. Opener batters Vikramjit Singh and Max ODowd could only muster 13 and 33 runs before getting back to their respective seats.

Wanindu Hasaranga celebrating after picking up the wicket against the Netherlands in the final

The target was still chasable as players like Wesley Barressi, Teja Nidamanuru, Noah Cross and Scott Edwards were remaining but all of them couldn’t contribute with the willow and got out in single digits. Credit goes to Dilshan Madushanka and Wanindu Hasaranga for their tight spells as they didn’t allow Netherlands batsmen to play freely.

Maheesh Theekshana was another bowler who impressed with his spectacular spell of 4 for 31 runs. Apart from sending Max ODowd back to the pavilion, he also took the wickets of Ryan Klein, Aryan Dutt and Clayton Floyd to finish things off.

Sri Lanka was splendid with their bowling throughout the tournament and they continued to dismantle here as well with everyone bowling well. Wanindu Hasaranga, who missed the last couple of games, took two wickets at an economy of 5 whereas Dilshan Madushanka outclassed the Men in Orange with his remarkable spell. He picked up three wickets in his 7 overs and gave away just 18 runs.

Madushanka was awarded the Player of the Match for his great performance and Sean Williams of Zimbabwe earned the Player of the Series award for his exceptional batting performance in the tournament. He scored 600 runs at an average of 100 and picked up several wickets as well, especially putting in a spirited performance against Scotland.

Now, both Sri Lanka and the Netherlands would look to continue with their fine form in the World Cup in India. The Lankans are quite ready for the challenge, however, the Netherlands would learn from their few mistakes and would like to give their best shot in October.